Food & Drink notes

Bonne appetite; space saving by a whisker; press here for fresh tortillas; Caribbean uncovered
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Bonne appetite

Bonne appetite

One good reason for shopping in France was always to load up on pots of Bonne Maman preserves with their oh-so-bistro-tablecloth check lids. The jam spread over here some time ago, joined only recently by their deliciously rich crème brûlée. The crème in the posh glass pot is the tops, and you don't have to get out the blow torch for the topping. With the 'non-grilling method' you just sprinkle on the sugar and eat - perfect for picnics. Pick up a pair for £1.89 from Waitrose.

Space saving by a whisker

I wouldn't rule out the possibility of the wheel being reinvented after all. Why not, if some Swiss genius can come up with an idea as brilliant as this. This whisk looks conventional enough in its spindly spirogyra-like way. Its secret is that it folds flat. Move that cunning collar up and down to flatten or spread out the filaments. Tiny kitchen? Drawers a tangle of gadgetry? The Kuhn Rikon Easy Store Whisk beats that problem. £6.95 for the smaller size, £7.95 for the 12-inch one. 01902 458410 for stockists.

Press here for fresh tortillas

Go on. Guess. Give up? If this reminds you of a flower press, you're close. The handsome pine object makes proper corn tortillas - nothing like those rubbery ready-made wraps. Just add water to cornflour, then flatten your tortillas, ready for frying. The press, from mad-for-Mexican Cool Chile Co ( www.coolchile.co.uk), is available by mail or from their stalls at London's Borough and Portobello Road markets on Fridays and Saturdays, priced £26.95. Buy the masa harina, proper tortilla flour, from them, too.

Caribbean uncovered

Does this look like a jar of cook-in sauce? Is there any shame in that? Would Rick Stein ever dream of slopping it on his fish? Well, it is, there isn't, and he just might. Cornwall's champion of small producers has praised the same company's jerk seasoning (the first of its type imported from Jamaica), so it's not impossible. Set up to provide rural jobs, and owned by the community, Walkerswood makes all sorts of authentic Jamaican seasonings and sauces with ingredients from local farms.

Caribbean cooking has a reputation for being hot and spicy, but coconut is also a key player. And why should Thai take all the credit for coconut? Use this creamy, peppery Rundown Sauce to give fish, chicken or vegetables a convincing Caribbean lilt. £1.59 a jar from larger supermarkets.

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